Epistemic stance in L2 English discourse
The development of pragmatic strategies in study abroad
This study investigates the development of pragmatic strategies in study abroad among a group of upper-intermediate to advanced second language (L2) learners studying in English as a lingua franca (ELF) context. For this purpose, their use of epistemic stance markers (EMs) was observed before, during, immediately after, and six months after their study abroad over a period of two years. An analysis of our qualitative results found significant inter-speaker variations in the use of EMs. This close analysis demonstrates that learners with lower-level speaking skills relied more on lexical verbs and adverbs when expressing their epistemic stance than those with higher-level speaking skills. This finding is in accordance with previous studies. Furthermore, our qualitative analysis of two learners demonstrates their pragmatic development through a more nuanced hedged assertion, as well as the non-linear and complex nature of their development. In addition, the pedagogical implications of this study are discussed from the ELF perspective.
Keywords: epistemic stance, study abroad, L2 English, L1 Japanese, pragmatic competence, English as a lingua franca
- 2.L2 pragmatic development in ELF and SA
- 3.Epistemic stance and learners’ use of EMs
- 4.3Data analysis
- 5.Quantitative findings
- 5.1Overall results
- 5.2Modal auxiliaries
- 5.3Lexical verbs
- 6.Qualitative findings
Published online: 09 February 2022
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